Lake Thunderbird Businesses Recovering After May 10 Tornado

Sunday, May 8th 2011, 9:43 pm
By: News 9

Jacqueline Sit, News 9

NORMAN, Oklahoma -- Visitors packed Lake Thunderbird on Mother's Day, which was great news for one business damaged by a tornado that hit nearly a year ago on May 10, 2010.

Leslie Johnson visited the lake with her family this year and remembered the day the twister tore through the area last year. Just hours after the tornado hit, Johnson drove down Highway 9 in Norman where the path of destruction was evident.

"It was crazy. There were cars just turned upside down and the one we saw, there was an X on it because it had already been checked," Johnson said.

She came out to check on her boat and discovered she was one of the lucky ones.

"I was in awe by the way the damage looked because you don't really realize the forces of mother nature until you really see how severe they can be. And we're really thankful our boat wasn't messed up."

Clear Bay Cafe received extensive damage from the storm and went without power for nearly a month. The cafe has now reopened and the owner says the restaurant is busier than ever.

"Last year, May 10th put a big damper on our business because people thought we were wiped out in the marina along with everybody else," said Clear Bay Cafe owner Nolan Moskowtiz. "But this year has been a lot better because everybody in the lake and in this area knows we're completely recovered, so it no longer has an impact on our business."

The Little River Marina that was destroyed by last year's tornado has also been rebuilt and has reopened.